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Odd Words October 1, 2014

Posted by The Typist in Toulouse Street.
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wpc-logo-fbThis week in literary New Orleans, sponsored by the Loyola Writing Institute at the Walker Percy Center for Writing and Publishing.

& The Loyola University Department of Theatre Arts and Dance and director Laura Hope kick off the 2014-2015 season with Samuel Beckett’s tragic comedy Endgame. Endgame will run in the Lower Depths Theatre at Loyola University, 6363 St. Charles Avenue (Corner of Calhoun and St. Charles), continues October 2, 3, 4 at 7:30 pm No Late Entry. Endgame’s opening lines repeat the word “finished,” and the rest of the play hammers away at the idea that beginnings and endings are intertwined, that existence is cyclical. While Hamm and Clov are in the “endgame” of their ancient lives, with death lurking around the corner, they are also stuck in a perpetual loop that never allows final closure. Like no other dramatist before him, Samuel Beckett’s works capture the pathos and ironies of modern life yet still maintain his faith in man’s capacity for compassion and survival no matter how absurd his environment may have become.

& Thursday at 6 pm Garden District Books hosts James Nolan and You Don’t Know Me: New and Selected Stories. In this collection of interrelated short stories, James Nolan swings wide open the courtyard gates of a city fabled both for its good times and bad. With ten new stories plus ten from his acclaimed previous volume, Perpetual Care, he introduces us to a quirky village of universal characters at crisis moments. We meet fatherless boys, Creole spinsters, and lying hustlers, a pregnant teenager, a concert pianist searching for his roots, a crooked homicide detective, a Carnival-parade king hiding in a Dunkin Donuts, a pistol-packing babysitter, and a codger who plots to blow up an overpass. Bookended by two post-Katrina stories, this collection takes us from the secretive hive of the French Quarter to decaying cemeteries, from Gentilly to Uptown to family dramas in the suburbs. With mordant dark humor, James Nolan paints a wry, disturbing but affectionately human portrait of his hometown for those who think they already know New Orleans, and what it means.

& Also on Thursday at 6 pm Louisiana native Ken Wheaton, author of SWEET AS CANE, SALTY AS TEARS, visits with Octavia Books. A freak accident forces a New Yorker to return to Louisiana and confront her Cajun past. There is nothing more dangerous than a spooked rhinoceros. It is just before lunchtime when Huey, the prized black rhino of Broussard, Louisiana, erupts from his enclosure, trampling a zoo employee on his way to a rampage in the Cajun countryside. The incident makes the rounds online as News of the Weird, and Katherine Fontenot is laughing along with the rest of her New York office when she notices the name of the hurt zookeeper: Karen-Anne Castille-her sister. Fifty years old, lonely, and in danger of being laid off, Katherine has spent decades trying to ignore her Louisiana roots. Forced home by Karen-Anne’s accident, she remembers everything about the bayou that she wanted to escape: the heat, the mosquitoes, and the constant, crushing embrace of family. But when forced to confront the ghosts of her past, she discovers that escape might never have been necessary

& Thursday at 6 pm check out the weekly Spoken Word event #WordConnections at the Juju Bag Cafe.

& At 6 pm at the Nix Library on South Carrollton in New Orleans:If you’re a writer who is interested in publishing your own or others’ work, come hear author/publisher Gary Michael Smith discuss the process of small press publishing from start to finish

& Thursday the Fiction Writers Group meets at the East Jefferson Regional Library at 6:30 pm. The Fiction Writers’ Group is a support group for serious writers of fiction. The group does not focus on poetry, essays or nonfiction. Events consist of critique sessions from group members, author talks and writing exercises. Free of charge and open to the public. Registration is not required

& The Gold Mine Saloon Weekly Poetry Night returns this Thursday at 7:30PM, 701 Dauphine Street (in the French Quarter). Admission is free. Must be 21yrs+. This week features A SCRIBE CALLED QUESS, PAUL CATAFAGO, LEE MEITZEN GRUE and musicians LOREN PICKFORD (sax & flutes), EARLE BROWN (sax), SPIKE PERKINS (bass), SIDNEY SNOW (guitar), ERIC B (d rums), REVEREND GOAT (buffalo harp), LIZ KIMBROUGH (washboard), KATARINA BOUDREAUX (vocals), MORIKEBA KOUYATE (kora). Followed as ever by OPEN MIC hosted by JIMMY ROSS(sign-up begins at 7:30pm). This event is sponsored by NEW ORLEANS INSTITUTE FOR THE IMAGINATION

& Every Thursday evening the New Orleans Poetry Brothel hosts a Poetry Hotline. Call 504-264-1336) from 8-12 pm CST and we’ll to hear an original poem.

& Every Friday The Rhyme Syndicate presents a spoken word open mic at Dish on Haynes Boulevard hosted by Hollywood. Doors at 8. Admission $7, $5 will college ID. Music by DJ XXL.

& Saturdays at 11:30 am its Story Time with Miss Maureen at Maple Street Book Shop. This week she’ll read Julia’s House for Lost Creatures by Ben Hatke. When Julia and her walking house come to town, she likes everything about her new neighborhood except how quiet it is! So Julia puts a sign up: “Julia’s House for Lost Creatures.” Soon she’s hosting goblins, mermaids, fairies, and even a dragon. Quiet isn’t a problem anymore for Julia…but getting her housemates to behave themselves is! The simple, sweet text of this picture book by New York Times Best-Selling Zita the Spacegirl author/illustrator Ben Hatke is perfectly balanced by his lush, detailed, immersive watercolor illustrations.

& Saturday afternoon brings The Poetry Buffet at the Latter Memorial Library at 2 pm hosted by Gina Ferrara. Poets Nordette Adams, Dennis Formento, Biljana Obradovic, and Nina Ouedraogo read from their work.

& This Sunday at 3 p.m. The Maple Leaf Reading Series features an open mic. f The Maple Leaf is the oldest continuous reading series in the south, founded by Everette Maddox. An open mic follows.

& Monday at 5:30 pm the Robert E. Smith Library on Canal Boulevard presents a writers’ workshop: Do you think in verse that could become poetry? Do you imagine characters, dialogue, and scenes? If so, join the Smith Library’s free Creative Writing Workshop.

& Monday at 7 pm brings Where We’re Going We Don’t Need Roads: Topside Press and Quaint Magazine present Casey Plett and Sybil Lamb at Kajun’s Pub. This fall the best new transgender fiction is going on a road trip! Topside Press authors Casey Plett (author of A Safe Girl To Love) and Sybil Lamb (author of I’ve Got A Time Bomb) will be crisscrossing Canada and the United States. This isn’t just a tour, this is a movement! On Mond see them read along with special guests M.E. Riley, Soleil Ho, Cordelia Nailong, Tela Clark, and Megan Mchugh.

& On Tuesday The 1718 Reading Series hosts two events: First off, at 12:30 we are hosting a meet-and-greet with our featured reader Zachary Lazar in the Manresa Den in Bobet Hall at Loyola. Pizza will be served and Lazar will be available to chat about all things writerly–his new novel, grad school, you name it. Next, as always we have our reading at the Columns Hotel. The reading starts at 7pm and will feature student readers Anna Schulte from Loyola, Alessandro Powell and Carolyn Canulette from Tulane! Zachary Lazar will read from his new novel I Pity the Poor Immigrant and Maple Street Books will host a signing directly after the reading.

& Susan Larson, the former book editor of the former Times-Picayune newspaper and member of the National Book Critics Circle hosts The Reading Life on WWNO (89.9 FM) on Tuesdays at 1:30 p.m. She features interviews with authors of local and national interest. Watch Odd Words on Facebook and Google+ on Tuesdays for a complete list of her guests and features.

& Tuesday at 6 pm Keith Weldon Medley presents BLACK LIFE in OLD NEW ORLEANS at Octavia Books. People of African descent have shaped New Orleans from its earliest days into the vibrant city it is today. From the slaves and indentured servants who drained the swamps, erected the buildings, constructed the levees, and dug the canals to the Freedom Riders who fought for racial equality in a segregated South, New Orleans’ history and black history in America are intricately connected. Historian Keith Weldon Medley recounts the rich history of African and African-American cultural influence on one of America’s most-beloved cities. This in-depth account is one of personal significance for the author, who was raised in New Orleans’ Faubourg Marigny and whose family history is tied to the area. Through fifteen self-contained chapters, Medley takes a chronological and focused look at some of New Orleans’ most prominent people and places. Rife with detailed histories of Faubourg Tremé, Congo Square, and many other pivotal locations, Medley’s subjects include the Mardi Gras Indians, the Zulu Parade, and Louis Armstrong and his upbringing in black Storyville. Tales of many other prominent New Orleanians also fill the pages, such as educator and civic leader Fannie C. Williams, founder of the People’s Defense League Ernest Wright, and civil rights attorney A.P. Tureaud.

& Also on Tuesday evening at 6 pm brings Benny Lewis and Fluent in 3 Months: How Anyone at Any Age Can Learn to Speak Any Language from Anywhere in the World to the Garden District Book Shop. Lewis is the creator of http://www.fluentin3months.com, the largest language learning blog in the world. His proven techniques break down language learning myths and replace them with practical “language hacks” that take advantage of the skills we already possess. Fluent in 3 Months provides everything you need to make learning a new language fast, intuitive, and fun.

& Zachary Lazar is 1718’s featured reader for their October Reading at the Columns Hotel at 8 pm. 1718 is a literary society comprised of students from Loyola, Tulane, and UNO. Their monthly readings are free and open to the public, and feature student readers as well as locally and nationally recognized writers. Lazar earned an A.B. degree in Comparative Literature from Brown University (1990) and an M.F.A from the University of Iowa Writer’s Workshop (1993). Lazar published his first novel, Aaron, Approximately, in 1998. His second novel, Sway, was a finalist for the Discover Great New Writers Award at Barnes & Noble and was an Editor’s Choice at the New York Times Book Review. Appropriating such real-life iconic figures as the early Rolling Stones, Charles Manson acolyte Bobby Beausoleil, and the avant-garde filmmaker Kenneth Anger, Sway is a novelistic exploration of the rise and fall of the Sixties counterculture. It was selected as a best book of 2008 by the Los Angeles Times, Publishers Weekly, Newsday, Rolling Stone, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, and other publications. In 2009, Lazar published the memoir Evening’s Empire: The Story of My Father’s Murder. It was selected as a Best Book of 2009 by the Chicago Tribune. Lazar’s articles and reviews have appeared in the New York Times Magazine, the Los Angeles Times, Newsday, BOMB magazine, and elsewhere. His most recent book is I Pity the Poor Immigrant. Zachary Lazar joined Tulane’s faculty in 2011. His honors include a fellowship from the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation (2009-2010), the Hodder Fellowship at Princeton University (2009-2010), a fellowship from the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown (1994-95), and the James Michener-Copernicus Society Award from the University of Iowa (1998). Maple Street Book Shop will be on-site to sell books.

& Every Tuesday night get on the list to spit at the longest running spoken word venue in New Orleans at Sweet Lorraine’s Jazz Club hosted by African-American Shakespear. Doors open at 7pm and the Mic pops at 8pm. It is $5 to get in.

& Wednesday at the Latter Memorial Library A Book Club Named Desire meets. Adults meet to discuss a local classic every fourth Wednesday of the month at 6 pm. For more information, contact Toni at tlmccourt@hotmail.com.

& Wednesday the East Jefferson Public Library hosts The Legend and Legacy of Everette Maddox. Moderator (and former XRP editor) Thomas Bonner, Jr. explores the legend and legacy of late New Orleans poet Everette Maddox with former Louisiana Poet Laureate Julie Kane, Xavier Review Editor Ralph Adamo, and others. Event starts at 7 pm at the East Bank Regional Library.

& The next Reading Between the Wines will take place Wednesday, October 1st, at 6:30PM at Pearl Wine Co. in the American Can Company (3700 Orleans Ave.). Pearl offers a selection of wines for $5 per glass. The series is free of charge and is open to the public. Registration is not required. Maple Street Book Shop will be on-site selling books. Readers had not been announced at press time.

& At 8 pm Wednesday WHO be reading at the Poetry & Music at BJs’ Blood Jet Series at BJ’s at 8 pm. This week features

& Every Wednesday at 8 pm at the Neutral Ground Coffeehouse there is an hour-long open mic poetry night (or fiction night; whatever you want to read really!).

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